Thieves steal charity money

BURGLERS who broke into Suffolk Owl Sanctuary and stole £300 of charity money have been labelled as 'the lowest of the low' by its head warden.The break-in happened on Wednesday evening, between 6pm and 8.

BURGLERS who broke into Suffolk Owl Sanctuary and stole £300 of charity money have been labelled as 'the lowest of the low' by its head warden.

The break-in happened on Wednesday evening, between 6pm and 8.45am, and caused hundreds of pounds worth of damage.

Donation boxes that were nailed and screwed to posts were ripped off, an office was completely ransacked and a hospital for sick and injured birds was broken into.

Head warden Julie Finnis said: "To put into context what they have taken, you could feed all of our birds for a month with that money."

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"Stealing is bad enough but when you take it from charity, where people have worked so hard to get that money and have given so much to help, is the lowest of the low."

"To have some little thug take it all away for a little bit of lager money, because that is probably what it is for, is despicable as far as I am concerned."

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The thieves gained entry to the sanctuary through a gap in the hedge surrounding the sanctuary, which backs onto a caravan park.

The stolen donation boxes, for visitors to donate money to the sanctuary, were located in three different places and all attached to posts.

They also managed to break into the office of Mrs Finnis and made off with £200 in petty cash. She said: "They managed to get into my office, which is a separate shed. They forced the door open, probably with a screwdriver, and broke through the locks and completely ransacked my office."

"They took the draws of my office desk out and took the doors off a cupboard in the office. They pulled everything out and scuttled it all over the place. It was a huge mess."

"They took all the money from my desk. There were some cheques in with the cash but they put those back. It was obvious that they just wanted the cash."

She added: "In my office is a fridge and there was three bottles of wine in it. They helped themselves to the wine and drank it and then left the empty bottles on the pavement."

Alarmingly, the thugs also managed to get into a hospital for sick and injured birds, which is located behind the office of Mrs Finnis.

She said: "Luckily there were not any residents in there last night because I hate to think what would have happened if there was any wild owls in there that were really poorly."

None of the birds were harmed in the break-in. An alarm is to be fitted to office that was broken into and extra measures are to be taken to prevent similar occurrences happening in the future.

Anyone who has any information should call PC Nichols on 01284 774100 or call Crime Stoppers on 0800 555111.

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